A HALESOWEN man who damaged his shoulder in a workplace accident has received £3,500 compensation from his employers despite the firm going into administration.

David Billingham, aged 40, received the cash payout after injuring his right shoulder while working as a caster for G Clancey Ltd, Mogul Lane, Cradley.

The firm was a precision engineer for the car manufacturing industry making carburettors and pistons. It went into administration in August 2006 and is still being wound up.

Mr Billingham's accident happened in October 2006 just a few months before staff were made redundant.

He was responsible for casting iron moulds and part of his job included pushing a quarter of a tonne trolley full of molten iron on a track to fill moulds on a conveyor belt.

The tracks were laid incorrectly and as a result the trolley banged against a machine called a weight remover as Mr Billingham was pushing it, causing damage to his shoulder.

He was forced to take a week off work and underwent intensive physiotherapy and can no longer lift heavy objects.

He decided to pursue compensation because despite similar accidents happening to his colleagues nothing had been done to fix the trolley’s tracks.

He said: “There had been a problem with this piece of equipment ever since it was installed and despite our continuous complaints nothing was ever done to fix it.

"By the time I had my accident I was so frustrated I decided that the only way to get the equipment fixed was to take legal action.”

Mr Billingham contacted officials for the union GMB who instructed the union’s lawyers Thompsons Solicitors who were successful in bringing a claim against G Clancey’s insurers even though the employer was in administration.

He added: “Unfortunately soon after the GMB instructed Thompsons Solicitors the firm was wound up and we were all made redundant.

"I never expected to receive any compensation after we lost our jobs but Thompsons did a great job securing a settlement from the insurers.”